Monday, July 26, 2010

A terrific resource, at last

Efrim eats so much! He eats constantly and yet remains in the lowest size bracket for his age. You would think he was starving.

On the other hand, they say that a baby's stomach is the size of their hand, and they shouldn't eat more than that at a sitting. Oops. He usually eat way more than a baby fist size.

Since my June WIC meeting was about portion control I have been looking for information on changing portion sizes and dietary needs of young children. WIC gave me a plate with children's portion sizes explained on it, but I was pretty sure that they were different than what my 10 month old should be eating, and I figured these amounts change pretty often at such a young age when they are growing so fast.

Saturday I finally sat down and looked on BabyCenter. This website is so amazing as a comprehensive resource. I almost always start here when I have a question. After a search I finally found one community forum entry asking for resources on infant/toddler portion sizes and one mother responded with this link:

USDA Food and Nutrition Service Child and Adult Care Meal Program Meal Patterns

Sounds complicated, but it's just the guidelines for what day cares, nursing homes, and other care providers should include in meals in order to meet proper dietary guidelines and get government reimbursement if they qualify. This was so helpful!

I copied down a simplified version of the information and made a chart to record what I feed Efrim for the next three weeks (until his birthday) just to get in the habit of being more aware, and to see how his diet actually measures up. Like I said in the previous post; I like to be super organized and methodical. Usually though this only applies to the planning process and our reality is much more organic and messy.

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